9/11

Yesterday was hard.

I remember 9/11 far too vividly. 

I grew up in New York City and now live not far from it. Twenty years ago I was working on a local newspaper in my town. When I walked into work that day, people were listening to the radio. This NEVER happened in the normal course of events. I must have looked confused when I walked into my office because a colleague looked at me and said, “Someone just flew a plane into the World  Trade Center.”

The rest of the day was a nightmare of fear and trembling.

One of my nephews was a cop in the city. It wasn’t until evening that I found out he was safe—he’d been sent to direct traffic in Queens. I later learned that one of his friends, who wanted to play in a golf tournament, had swapped tours of duty with another officer. The guy he swapped with died.

My cousin was an EMT. He wasn’t safe—he’d been injured—but he was alive.

My husband’s cousin-in-law, who worked at the stock exchange, was one of those people in the photograph of people running down Broadway chased by a cloud of smoke/debris/who knows what.

People kept calling our office, telling us that this person from out town was dead, asking if that one was alive. There was nothing we could do.

Twenty years later I remember it all far too vividly. I am grateful for music. The radio has been playing Barber’s “Adagio for Strings”, Bach’s “I Know That My Redeemer Liveth.”

Music helps.

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